Richard Philippe Gets First Champ Car Test with Mi-Jack Conquest Racing
(Indianapolis, IN) November 22, 2005 -- Fifteen-year-old Richard Philippe had the experience of a lifetime this past week as he strapped in behind the wheel of one of the Mi-Jack Conquest Racing Champ Cars for the first time in his career. The test at Putnam Park (IN) was arranged when Philippe cashed in on a promise made to him by Mi-Jack Conquest Racing co-owner, Eric Bachelart.
"Eric promised me earlier this year, if I won the Formula BWM USA championship, he would give him a test in his Champ Car," said Philippe. "I won. So he set up the test."
Philippe was crowned the 2005 Formula BMW USA Champion in September, as well as the "Rookie Cup" Champion. He not only won the championship in his first year of competition, but he earned six pole positions and took home the trophy from three of the biggest races of the year. With his win in round eight of the season, Philippe was named the youngest driver ever to be victorious at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Philippe turned in some of the most impressive stats accomplished in the Formula BMW USA Series.
In order to prepare Philippe for the transition from the 140 horsepower BMW car he competed with in 2005, the Mi-Jack Conquest Racing crew brought along the newly acquired Toyota Atlantic chassis for Philippe to shake down. He turned fifteen laps in the car before the team let him loose in the 750 horsepower Reynard Champ Car chassis.
Philippe's performance during the test was just as impressive as he adapted well to both the Atlantic and Champ Car. Operating under cool temperatures, Philippe turned very competitive lap times and showed great finesse with pit stop procedures.J"Richard looked very comfortable working with both cars," said Bachelart after the test. "He demonstrated great driving talent and provided the team with good feedback."
The recently crowned 2005 Champ Car "Most Improved Driver of the Year," Nelson Philippe, Richard's older brother, was also on hand for the test to watch and offer advice to the team. The Mi-Jack Conquest Racing Team was very pleased with the first test session with the new Toyota Atlantic chassis and the Reynard Champ Car. Several more tests are planned in future months for the new Atlantic venue. For further updates, please check back with www.conquestracing.com.